A new study from the Associational Institute of Apocalyptic Economic Research and Doom Forecasting underwritten by Goldman Sachs and Standard & Poors predicts that by 2020, the State of Alaska will closely resemble the set of the 2002 post-apocalyptic British zombie thriller film, "28 Days Later."
Between the adverse effects of climate change and the ever-plummeting price of oil, the study forecasts that over the next four years, the State will be nearly indistinguishable from the deserted and decimated London hellscape depicted in the critically-acclaimed indie popcorn flick.
Although economists didn't conclude--necessarily--that a chimpanzee-borne "rage-virus" would accidentally be released into Alaska's widespread population by animal rights activists, overwhelming their victims in 10-20 seconds and causing them to infect everyone in their path, they couldn't exactly rule it out, and similar effects are anticipated.
At first, lines at the Moose's Tooth on Saturday nights may shorten considerably, and at least two Home Depots and one Wal-Mart location may permanently shutter their doors, taking with them life-giving jobs in retail and relocating them to the Lower 48.
That will just be the tip of the melting and receding iceberg, however. Slowly, it will begin to dawn on Alaskans who have been foolhardy enough to remain here in the face of an easier-than-ever-to-obtain 10" Spicy Thai Chicken personal pizza that life as they once knew it is over.
The government will descend into anarchy as legislators and their constituents stop trying to surgically parse the budget and instead order a gross of giant novelty scissors from Oriental Trading Co., and begin theatrically hacking away at paper, tossing it out of every window in Juneau like so much confetti amid maniacal laughter.
By late 2019, there will be nothing but tundra-tumbleweed and moose-dropping candy wrappers blowing through the streets of Anchorage, Fairbanks, and Juneau while the remaining denizens of these once-noble cities shuffle aimlessly with a collective vacant stare, marauding through deserted streets starved and desperately searching for a rumored secret cache of reindeer sausage. The National Guard and military will be powerless to stop the carnage, since the federal government will have closed all the military bases in Alaska by then.
Completely isolated from the outside world by post office closures and spotty WiFi (that part is nothing new), the heartiest and most resourceful survivors will retreat to the bush, where they will raise a white flag and make their final stand against certain doom. A lone fighter jet may be seen circling over their small enclave, while the less fortunate will simply eat each other's brains until there's no one left.
A copy of the study can be found online here.